Media & Insights

Landsec continues to grow leisure offer at Bluewater with Rio Ferdinand backed football concept

8 December 2023

Landsec has announced plans to expand the leisure offering at Bluewater, Kent, with a world first football-themed entertainment venue. The one of a kind leisure concept, Ballerz, is backed by footballing legends Rio Ferdinand, Bobby Zamora, Roberto Carlos and Mark Noble, alongside experts from the leisure industry. 


Ballerz have chosen Bluewater as the first location for the new concept and will occupy 26,000 sq ft inside a purpose built all weather ‘Air-dome’ on one of the centre’s carparks. The space will host a range of specialist session based activities designed by professional footballers and coaches to integrate all areas of the beautiful game; merging the gamification of skills challenges with the traditional elements of coaching and matches. 


Ballerz will feature a seven aside 5G football pitch complete with Premier League-style changing rooms, stadium seating, players tunnel and cameras that will give players instant pitch-side replays of the action which can then be shared on social media. A specialist skills zone will also be equipped with market-leading technology, METRIX, providing players with stats and rankings. Alongside this, guests will be able to watch live sport, go toe-to-toe in a state of the art gaming lounge and choose from three different football themed retail and food and drink outlets. 


Ballerz is unique in combining competitive socialising with professional, lifestyle and fitness training. The space will act as an inclusive hub where schools, clubs and community groups can come together to develop new skills and stay active. 


The announcement forms part of wider plans to enhance the leisure offer at Bluewater as demand for one of a kind experiences increases. It follows a number of new leisure openings at the centre, including Gravity Rocks, an indoor climbing wall, and Sky Trek, an ariel trekking and high ropes course. 


Mark Warne, Brand Account Director for Hospitality and Leisure at Landsec said: “Successful leisure concepts add value to retail destinations, giving guests more reasons to visit by providing an all-day experience. Competitive socialising venues in particular are growing in popularity and guests are looking to try something new. 


“Ballerz is a unique concept which combines competitive socialising with fitness and skills training, allowing it to appeal to a wide range of audiences. Once open, its certain to enhance the leisure offer at the centre further, giving guests even more reasons to visit.” 


Rio Ferdinand said: “Football is more than just a sport, it’s entertainment, it’s exercise, it’s community. At Ballerz we bring this all together for existing fans to enjoy and inspire a whole new generation of future fans.”


Roberto Carlos added: “Ballerz has the most innovative tech that is available. It’s amazing that you can hire a pitch, watch back your goals and retrieve all of your data. We’re creating something that has never been done before.”